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History of smoking a possible co-factor of ME/CFS?

Discussion in 'Latest ME/CFS Research' started by Levi, Sep 14, 2010.


CFS patients - have you ever or do you now smoke cigarettes?

  1. Firm ME/CFS diagnosis - currently smoke cigarettes

    8 vote(s)
  2. Firm ME/CFS diagnosois - past cigarette use only

    15 vote(s)
  3. Firm ME/CFS diagnosis - have never smoked cigarettes

    35 vote(s)
  4. Unconfirmed or no ME/CFS diagnosis - currently smoke cigarettes

    2 vote(s)
  5. Unconfirmed or no ME/CFS diagnosois - past cigarette use only

    1 vote(s)
  6. Unconfirmed of no ME/CFS diagnosis - have never smoked cigarettes

    3 vote(s)
  1. xrayspex

    xrayspex Senior Member

    I think cigarettes act on the dopamine which is important for some cases of cfs to have more energy.

    sheeeit, I just misvoted in the poll, meant to say i was a past smoker but accidentally said current sorry, if you can change one vote that way....

    I have suspected that growing up in a 2 parent-smoking household was a big risk factor for my adult problems....I was in midwest/US too where long winters shut inside, I recall car trips sucked and I would always get sick as they smoked away back in the day and didnt worry about 2nd hand smoke.
  2. Alesh

    Alesh Senior Member

    Czech Republic, EU
    I started to smoke after 6 years of being ill and I still regret it. Now I have been smoking for 6 years. Nicotine and harmala alkaloids are good for the brain biochemistry, better concentration and temporary alleviation of the brain fog but the constant chronic poisoning is certainly undesirable.
  3. Sallysblooms

    Sallysblooms P.O.T.S. now SO MUCH BETTER!

    Southern USA
    I was always ill when around any cig. smoke out in public, even when very young. I would never be able to smoke. I can't be near it. I have heard so many other people with CFS that are sensitive to toxins. So many of them in cig. smoke. It is surprising that anyone with CFS or POTS can smoke. Usually you try to get all toxins away so the body can heal.
  4. muffin

    muffin Senior Member

    Yes! The smoking does do "something" to help the CFS/FM in me

    I don't drink and only have a small cup of coffee. However, I do drink about 3 to 6 cans of Coke a day and that too is to stay awake and I just LOVE Coke. No other stimulants keep me awake. The doctor and I tried all the stimulants including the meds for ADD. Provigil knocked me out cold (narcolepsy drug). Concerta at 1/2 a pill knocked me out cold for three days! When I have tried to drink pitch black coffee from the pot (deseperate to stay awake and function) ithat huge amount of coffee knocked me out cold like a sleeping pill. But smoking and measured amounts of Coke seem to help somewhat.

    I have tried everything to quit smoking and nothing works. I do wear the patches when I have to be in places where I can not smoke and that helps, but as soon as I can smoke, back goes that cig into the mouth. I have actually worn TWO full strength nicotine patches, smoked like a chimney and my BP stayed low/normal. This has happened a number of times and really irritates the nurses when I raise my shirt up to show the two patches on my arm and gloat that I also was smoking like a chimney before they took my BP. One patch has caused many people to have heart palpitations, heart attacks, etc. and there I am, with two nicotine patches on and smoking like a fiend and my BP is low/normal.
    Go figure that one out since the nurses and dental staff get so mad at me -- and I just laugh and laugh. (OK. My lungs are not laughing, I admit that)
  5. Levi

    Levi Senior Member

    Bleached cigarette paper contains dioxins

    Particularly in the older cigarettes before it became a known issue:

    Dioxin has been proven to damage the human immune system:

    So inhaling dioxin tainted smoke is a possible contributory factor in the development of ME/CFS for some people. Interactions with retroviral infections like HIV indicate that with smoking there is increased the risk in progression to AIDs.
  6. silicon

    silicon Senior Member

    i have never smoked a cigarette. My Mom smoked when she was younger, and quit a few years before I was born. I am very chemically sensitive to cigarette smoke.
  7. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

    Sth Australia
    great idea for a poll :)

    I do think smoking in the CFS/ME community would be far less then in the average population.. due to the often coexisting MCS.
  8. xrayspex

    xrayspex Senior Member

    I smoked for awhile like age 16 to 20 or so on and off but after i quit was super sensitive to smoke, makes me sick
  9. Dainty

    Dainty Senior Member

    Washington State
    Never smoked, grew up in a smoke-free environment, now very chemically sensitive and have severe life-threatening reactions to cigarette smoke. You couldn't pay me to start it up.

    That said, I don't doubt the nicotine could possibly turn out to be a drug helpful to CFS/ME.
  10. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

    Never smoked. I also avoided second hand smoke. I am sensitive to smoke and other chemicals. I know I had some second hand smoke but much less than an average person and most of my exposure was in the past few years, well after getting sick.

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